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Your Health Matters: Teen Pregnancy Prevention

Each day in 2010, approximately 15 adolescents in  Minnesota became pregnant and 11 became moms.

TEEN PREGNANCY IN THE UNITED STATES
Last month, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released the 2010 data on teen pregnancy in the United States showing a 9 percent decline in the US Teens on Stairsteen birthrate, reaching a historic low in 2010. In fact, fewer babies were born to teenagers in 2010 than in any year since 1946. If the teen birthrates observed in 1991 had not declined through 2010 as they did, there would have been an estimated 3.4 million additional births to teenagers from 1992 through 2010.

TEEN PREGNANCY IN MINNESOTA
Evidence that teen birthrates continue to decline is welcome, but our work is far from done. But According to Teenwise Minnesota, each day in 2010, approximately 15 adolescents in Minnesota became pregnant and 11 became moms. While white adolescents in Minnesota had the lowest pregnancy rate in the nation, the rate for African American adolescents in Minnesota was among the highest in the country.

PLANNED PARENTHOOD’S RESPONSE

According to the Guttmacher Institute, increased contraceptive use among teens is largely responsible for the declining rates of teen pregnancy because teens aren’t reporting an increase in sexual activity, but they are reporting better and more consistent contraceptive use. This data bolsters what we see in our work with youth: that access to contraception and accurate information about sex helps prevent teen pregnancy.

Access to Health Care for Young People
For more than 80 years, Planned Parenthood Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota (PPMNS) has been providing preventive health care in order to reduce the number of unintended pregnancies and keep young people healthy. Whether a patient is privately insured, publicly insured or needs no-cost services, our doors are open to everyone. People of all ages come to us because they know they will be cared for compassionately and confidentially. To schedule an appointment call 1-800-230-PLAN. Or, visit our on-line health center.

Culturally Competent Education
Planned Parenthood works every day to prevent teen pregnancy. We reach more than 25,000 individuals in the region with culturally appropriate health education every year.

Offering culturally specific programming is a core strategy for ensuring that we reach all youth in Minnesota, especially young people who are at an increased risk for unintended pregnancy and sexually transmitted infections. Planned Parenthood’s youth and adult education programs for the Hispanic, African Immigrant and Hmong communities in Minnesota are all led by staff that is from the communities they are serving – a key part of our approach.

Parent-Child Programs
Planned Parenthood offers education programs for parents and kids to enhance parent-child connectedness (PCC). PCC is a strong emotional bond between parent and child and is known in the public health world as a “super protector,” buffering adolescents from the many challenges and risks they face. Strong PCC protects against 33 negative adolescent outcomes such as unintended pregnancy; HIV and other sexually transmitted infections (STIs); violence; depression; eating disorders; alcohol, tobacco and drug use; and poor academic achievement.

In order to help families enhance PCC, PPMNS offers Mother/Daughter and Mother/Son retreats in the metro area and Greater Minnesota throughout the year. You can learn more about Parent-Child Connectedness here.


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